National Security Desk / September 29, 2016

U.S. Welcomes Undocumented Refugees

Many are getting in without corroborating paperwork.

When it comes to the Obama administration’s refugee program, America’s borders are basically wide open. We begin with an excerpt from The Washington Times, which notes: “Leon Rodriguez, director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, said a ‘significant’ number of refugees have been implicated in terrorist plots over the past eight years but that the rejection of some 7 percent of Syrian applications proves his officers can spot danger signs.”

That assertion is not only contradictory, it’s downright deceitful. Here’s what Rodriguez told the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday: “There are cases where [a refugee applicant’s] testimony is not necessarily corroborated by documents.” He added, “I am acknowledging that, yes, testimony can be the basis for the grant of a refugee but it needs to be tested against other information that we know — about the country conditions, at a minimum.”

Rodriguez’s claim that refugees are adequately vetted was further undermined when he strongly rebuked a newly uncovered DHS memo that warns, “Refugee fraud is easy to commit, yet not easy to investigate.” Yet Rodriguez’s own words only affirm there are national security-impairing vulnerabilities present in the vetting process.

His testimony also supports what FBI Director James Comey revealed last October: “[I]f someone has never made a ripple in the pond in Syria in a way that would get their identity or their interest reflected in our database, we can query our database until the cows come home, but … nothing [will] show up because we have no record of them.”

There’s no question terrorists are exploiting the system. Yet the White House website says, “Refugees undergo more rigorous screening than anyone else we allow into the United States.” If that’s true, the administration is setting a dangerously low bar.

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